Rico Suave Strikes Again

Los Angeles police are on the lookout for a slick-haired thief who’s made off with thousands in cash and items belonging to several bands and sports teams over the past year.

He’s donned soccer jerseys and stylish suits during several schemes and his charming nature and smooth operations have led authorities to dub the man the “Rico Suave” bandit, according to the Los Angeles Times.

A man pretending to be a member of a salsa band playing the Greek Theatre in August was reportedly able to talk a Wilshire Grand hotel clerk into giving him a pass key to the band’s room, from which $9,000 was later reported missing.

In early October, a man allegedly talked his way into the hotel room of an Argentine rock band at the Hotel Menage while the group was performing at the House of Blues and, when he left, the room was $4,000 lighter.

A man dressed in a suit and bearing credentials and a clipboard was seen in the locker rooms of the Staples Center during an exhibition game later that month between Tel Aviv’s Maccabi Electra and the Los Angeles Clippers, authorities told the paper.

Following the game, the Israeli team reported more than $26,000 in cash and jewelry missing.

Authorities stepped up the search for the thief after a sharp-dressed man talked his way into the hotel suite of a billionaire in town for the Academy Awards, making off with $40,000 in jewelry.

“He has all the makings of that rare breed of sophisticated cat burglar,” LAPD Lt. Paul Vernon told the Times. “It sounds very similar, based on physical appearance and M.O. to the same guy we’ve been trying to find since October. Until we review the video, we won’t be able to tell for sure. In all these cases, the suspect appears to work alone, is bold and is confident.”

After reviewing video footage, authorities concluded the same man was responsible for the salsa band and Staples Center heists, and also linked him to the theft of a laptop belonging to an LAPD detective, the paper reported.

“He is very much a con man and knows his game,” Vernon said.